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Local News

Tucker Road Realignments Costs Surprises County Commissioners

Hood River County Commissioners received a surprise when receiving a report on the costs to realignment of Tucker Road at Nobi’s Corner and the Windmaster/Country Club intersection.  The Oregon Department of Transportation estimate for the project has gone from about $3,200,000 to around $4,000,000.  The County has to provide a 10% match, and Commission Chair Ron Rivers says the increase would cause that share to go beyond the $350,000 the County has budgeted for it.  Commissioners received seven options on how to proceed from Public Works Director Mikel Diwan, and they chose to have staff go back and talk with ODOT about just doing the Nobi’s Corner portion of the project, which would cost about $2,000,000.

Walden Bill Would Pilot Medical Scribes At VA Facilities

Oregon Second District Congressman Greg Walden has introduced a bill to implement a pilot program for medical scribes at VA facilities.  The Hood River Republican says that will help ease administrative burdens that are preventing physicians from devoting their full attention to veterans.  Walden says studies have shown that the use of medical scribes in the private sector resulted in a 59 percent increase in the number of patients physicians see per hour.  He adds the bill is also intended to better recruit and retain talented physicians to serve at VA health centers.

April 17 Prep Sports Roundup

Boys Lacrosse

Hood River Valley 20, Wilsonville 9:  The Eagles move their record to 3-2 on the season.


Girls Golf

The Dalles finished eighth in the Bend Invitational.  Abby Walker had the low score for the Riverhawks at the Bend Golf and Country Club.


Track and Field

Allison Gilliam won the 100 meter hurdles and the boys’ 4 by 400 meter relay team was victorious for Goldendale in an eight-school meet in Royal.

Cherry Fest To Include Ag Job Fair

The Northwest Cherry Festival is this weekend in The Dalles.  The usual array of events are planned from Friday afternoon through Sunday, centered around the downtown area.  But one new event will be an agricultural job fair, put on by a number of area growers and producers.  The Dalles Area Chamber of Commerce CEO Lisa Farquharson says they wanted to do something to help ag employers during the Cherry Fest.  The job fair will be open from noon to 6 p.m. on Saturday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday at Washington and Second Street.  Employers who would like to take part should call The Dalles Chamber at 541-296-2231.

Port of HR Budget Committee To Discuss Bridge Toll

The Port of Hood River’s budget committee meets to discuss the 2017-18 fiscal year Tuesday, and the question of raising the toll for the Interstate Bridge will come up again.  Port Executive Director Michael McElwee says whether the Port can generate the state and federal support to replace the bridge or has to maintain it for another 30 years, there is a need to generate the funds required for either possibility.  McElwee adds to keep the current bridge operational, the Port will need 48 million dollars in the next 15 years based on a 30-year model that the Port recently developed.  The Port budget committee meets at noon on Tuesday in the Marina Center boardroom.

April 14-15 Prep Sports Roundup


Hood River Valley sweeps Hermiston 1-0 and 14-10:  Connor Coerper pitched a one-hitter while Lucas Viuhkola drove in the winning run in the opener, while Greyson Losee drove in four runs for HRV in the nightcap.

Pendleton sweeps The Dalles 7-6 and 13-7:  The Buckaroos scored a run in the bottom of the seventh inning to win game one, and then scored seven in the fifth to win game two.

King’s Way Christian 8, Columbia 1

LaCenter 1, Stevenson 0

Dufur sweeps Elgin 1-0 and 10-5

Sherman sweeps Union 12-2 and 19-2.

Dayton sweeps Lyle-Wishram-Klickitat 10-0 and 5-2.



Hood River Valley sweeps Hermiston 6-0 and 6-4:  The Eagles scored all six of their runs in the sixth inning of game one to back Hannah McNerney’s shutout.  HRV came back in game two with two runs in both the fifth and sixth innings to win.

Pendleton sweeps The Dalles 7-2 and 12-0.

Dayton sweeps Lyle-Wishram-Klickitat 36-0 and 22-0.


Track and Field

Hood River Valley’s girls were fifth and the boys seventh at the Viking Relays at North Salem.  Katie Kennedy finished second in the girls’ 100 meter hurdles to provide the top finish of the day for HRV.


Lyle-Wishram’s boys were third to provide the top team finish by Columbia Gorge-area schools at the River’s Edge Invitational in Boardman, as Brandon Montoya won the 100 and 200 meters and the long jump.  South Wasco’s Ana Popchock won the girls’ long jump and triple jump.


Julian Hernandez finished third in the boys’ javelin to provide the top finish for The Dalles at the Willamette Falls Invitational at Oregon City


Stevenson won both the boys and girls titles at its own Al McKee Invitational.  The Bulldogs’ Lincoln Krog won a pair of boys’ events, while Columbia’s Alondra Casarez-Garcia and Trout Lake’s Liz Fink each won three girls’ events.


Boys Soccer

Seton Catholic 2, Columbia 1

Toledo 8, Stevenson 1


Boys Tennis

Goldendale 4, White Swan 0


Girls Tennis

Hood River Valley finished fifth at the Steve Rankin Invitational in Madras.  America Flores and Crystal Flores finished second in number two doubles.

The Dalles 6, Madras 2

Goldendale 5, White Swan 0


Girls Lacrosse

Hood River Valley 13, Clackamas 3:  Kathryn Koenig scored three goals as the Eagles move to 4-3 on the season.

Nelson Named Principal Of The Year

The Dalles High School Principal Nick Nelson has been named the Oregon High School Principal of the Year by the Confederation of Oregon School Administrators.  Nelson received the award at Thursday’s North Wasco County School District 21 board meeting.  D-21 Superintendent Candy Armstrong nominated him for the award, saying he has been a tremendous leader in improvement of the academic direction of The Dalles High School.  Nelson will be honored in June at the Confederation of Oregon School Administrators convention in Seaside, and is eligible for the National High School Principal of the Year award.

MCMC Cuts Eleven Jobs

Mid-Columbia Medical Center announced Thursday it is reducing its workforce by 11 positions. MCMC Interim Chief Executive Officer Dianne Storby said it was the first time in over 20 years the hospital in The Dalles will eliminate positions.  She indicated the positions being reduced includes managers and staff-level jobs.  In a written statement, Storby said MCMC is experiencing budgetary pressures due to several factors, including a down turn in revenue for 2016 and the first two months of 2017, the uncertainty of healthcare reimbursements at the state and national level, and statistical and financial information challenges resulting from continued transition in their electronic health record.

HR Garbage To Start Delivering New Carts May 1

Hood River Garbage will be delivering new carts to residents within the City limits starting on Monday in preparation for a new service structure beginning on May 1.  Hood River Garbage site manager Jim Winterbottom says each customer will receive three bins.  One will be for garbage, one for co-mingled recycling, and the third for compostable materials.  Glass recyclables will continue to be left in a smaller blue bin.  Garbage and recycling will be picked up every other week, while the compost bin will be serviced every week.  Complete instructions will be included with the new carts, a mailer has also been sent out explaining what is taking place, and there is information at the City of Hood River website.  The new carts will not be used until May 1.

Committee Looks To Clairify Family Clause In Sick Leave Law

The Oregon State Senate Workforce Committee will be taking up clarifications to the paid sick leave legislation that was approved one year ago.  29th District Senator and committee member Bill Hansell says legislators had been told at the time the bill was passed that if a small business or farm with mostly family members working for you that those family members would be excluded from the paid sick leave count, but the Bureau of Labor and Industries interpreted that as meaning the company had to be owned by the family, and Hansell says most family farms are limited liability corporations.  Hansell says the committee has been working on changing that, adding labor and industry have come together to work on it, and he expects to carry a bill to the floor during the current session.